TWINKLE TWINKLE LITTLE STAR!

YOU PROBABLY WONDER WHERE I ARE…  I MEAN, WHERE I WAS!  Well, rather than keep you guessing, I’ll just tell you that I spent Saturday evening in the charming town of Lockhart, Texas.  (“The Barbecue Capital of The World!)  Last night, I was one of the featured authors at the gala event known as Evening With The Authors, and even though I might be considered a “little star,” I still had a twinkle in my eye!  Ah, what a marvelous time was had by all…  The event was held at Judge Rebecca Hawener’s enchanting garden estate, a lovely setting festooned with an incredible array of flora and fauna.  (Flora was the woman sitting beside me.)

The grounds were decorated with lovely plants, flower arrangements, and special lighting.  (I was the only “dim thing” present!)  Each author had their own table, designated by a huge neon sign (just kidding) and was chaperoned through the evening by a series of wonderful volunteer guides.  Our first guide was an interesting and intelligent woman named Linda Brooks, and she was simply a marvelous hostess.  In fact, every volunteer we met was just wonderful, and I can see why Lockhart is such a pleasant place to live.  The town is filled with sweet, pleasant folks.  (Folks who love to read, too!)

I met a couple of wonderful ladies from Barnes & Noble Book Sellers, and they were kind enough to feature all 3 of my mystery novels, plus my new non-fiction book, THE SECOND MOURNING.  I understand that my history book was actually the best seller of the evening, and for that, I am extremely grateful.  (No, I didn’t buy 30 copies!)  The hard-working ladies from Barnes & Noble set up a book tent, handled the sales, and provided the perfect venue for browsing throughout the evening.

Patty and I were amazed by all of the people who love American history, and we got to meet some truly incredible folks who were quite anxious to learn about President Garfield’s assassination.  I must have autographed at least 5,000 books (slight exaggeration here) but I loved every minute, and the best part was meeting so many interesting citizens.  Life is good, especially in a small town.  Even better in a small town with 4 great barbecue joints!

In case you’re wondering, we didn’t dine on barbecue.  The fare consisted of healthy cuisine, including a shrimp-filled paella and lots of green salads.  (See what happens when women run the show?)  If men were in charge, we would have feasted on brisket and ribs, and consumed copious amounts of Lone Star Beer.  With the ladies running things, we were treated to an endless supply of good wine from the Pleasant Hill Winery.  Of course, there were several tables of homemade desserts, but I resisted the temptation!  (My motto is still:  “Boys who eat sweets, take up two seats!”)

I might have mentioned this already, but all net proceeds went to support the Dr. Eugene Clark Library of Lockhart.  If you live in Texas, you should definitely plan a trip to Lockhart, which represents the best characteristics of American life.  You will meet a lot of honest, decent, hard-working folks who will make you feel proud to live in such a great country as ours.  You will also be treated to some mighty good food, so come hungry!

Finally, in celebration of my newest Adam Gold Mystery (RANSOM ON THE RHONE) I am now packing for another book tour/road trip/vacation to sunny Florida!  I am not quite sure of our itinerary, but my publicist, Blind Lemon Lefkowitz, tells me that we have some intriguing stops along the way.  (God knows what that means!)  Our last “intriguing” venture resulted in a stiff fine and a suspended jail sentence!  If any of my blog followers know the name of a reliable bail bondsman, please forward asap.

In closing, I would like to assure you that I will definitely NOT be exercising  during this outing.  In fact, if my body is ever found dead on a jogging trail, just know I was murdered elsewhere and dumped there!

Have a safe and wonderful week!  Love to all…

Doc Yanoff

 

P.S.  I will post some photographs of last night’s event in the near future!

 

 

 

INVASION OF THE BOOK PEOPLE!

MY GOODNESS, THAT SOUNDS LIKE THE TITLE OF A 1950s HORROR MOVIE!  But it’s not…  In fact, it’s just the opposite of horrible, it’s some more wonderful news!  I love sharing good news with my blog followers, and today I have something splendid to share…..  Starting next Tuesday, January 14, 2014, all 3 of the “Adam Gold Mystery Novels” will be featured and sold at Austin’s most prestigious book store….. BookPeople!  (Located on N. Lamar Blvd.)  Yep, you read right, the good folks of Central Texas will now be able to purchase all of my books at a traditional book store, as well as on Amazon.com, Barnesandnoble.com, Kindle, and the Nook.

Two days ago I signed a contract with the store, and starting next Tuesday, the books (THE GRACELAND GANG, THE PIRATE PATH, and DEVIL’S COVE) will be featured at the front table as you walk into the store!  (Where the “best-sellers” are sold)  I will attach the covers at the end of this blog, just in case you forgot what they look like.  By the way, I will also be featured in their newsletter and in their online book catalogue, so if you can, please spread the word.  Incidentally, none of this would have been possible without you guys, so THANK YOU!

In other news, our 3-day winter has finally ended.  Whew, that was a rough few days!  How cold did it get down here in Austin?  Well, thanks to that darn polar vortex, Texas inmates were BEGGING for the electric chair!  People were getting the cold shoulder everywhere they went!  It was too frigid to get into a heated argument!  Our politicians had their hands in their own pockets!  (Now THAT’S cold)

I may have a book signing/lecture in San Antonio next week.  (Depending on the weather.)  I hope it comes off, because I would love to go back to El Mirador restaurant for a bowl of sopa de lima or chile de arbol.  If you ever find yourself in the historic King William neighborhood, you must stop in for some of Maria Trevino’s amazing food.  (Her family is keeping her reputation alive and well.)  Es muy bueno!

Finally, I was chatting with a neighbor yesterday, and he asked me what I thought about same sex marriage.  I told him that I’ve been having the same sex for the last 35 years!  I did ask my wife if she wanted me to take Viagra.  She told me to start with NoDoz, whatever that is.  Women!

Well, on that note, I wish you all a safe and pleasant week.  I might have another major announcement next week, so keep those cards and letters coming!  Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

 

gracelandgangcoverpiratepathcoverdevilscovecover

A HAPPY HILL COUNTRY HOLIDAY!

HOWDY BUCKEROOS AND BUCKETTES!  I hope y’all had a wonderful holiday.  Ma and Pa Kettle (Patty and I) spent the last few days on the McCloskey Ranch, in the heart of the Texas Hill Country, wining and dining with family and friends.  Our most groovy adventure began on the Riverwalk in San Antonio.  Hey, am I dating myself by using the word “groovy?”  I used to date myself in high school, but that’s another story.  (I was very lonely.)  Anyway, where was I?  Oh yes, the Riverwalk.  Well, we strolled along the lovely river and then made our way to Mi Tierra Mexican Restaurant, the world’s BEST Mexican restaurant!  After two (fabulous) margaritas, we feasted on a truly memorable meal.

Now don’t get mad at me, but… I ate a kid!  I know it sounds cruel, but the kid was stewed to perfection and the meat literally fell off the bones.  This particular kid was served with rice and beans!  Well, you know what they say, “kids should be stewed, not herded.”  (Don’t call the police, a “kid” is a baby goat!)  Which reminds me, our waiter really “got my goat!”  There wasn’t a baaaaad piece on my plate!

We spent Christmas Eve and Christmas Day at Tim McCloskey’s humble abode, and his very significant other, Miss Hannah, rustled up some mighty good grubs, I mean, grub.  We dined on a magnificent rib roast and maple ham, and then had the pleasure of watching Colton McCloskey drink an entire bottle of port!  (almost)  After dinner, we entered a cut-throat poker tournament, featuring the “Magical Minard Brothers,” (Andrew and Jeff) who just happen to be fine fellows and great card players.  (I think their mother cheats, but I will tell the story of the 3 queens at a later date!)

Being a true cowboy, I decided to go horseback riding on the way back to Austin.  Unfortunately, we stopped at a place that only had one horse!  A mare named Molasses.  She refused to gallop during the day.  (She was a “night mare.”)  Definitely not a “stable” animal!  I rode bareback for a while, but then I got cold and put my shirt back on.  All right, enough horsing around…..

In closing, I wish to thank Sarah Doolittle, a prominent reporter from the Four Points News, for her wonderful article, illuminating my illustrious writing career.  Sarah recently penned a great article about me, and if you would like to read it, just Google:  Four Points News.  Click on the December 25, 2013 issue.  You will see my mug on the front page (in color!) and a long article about my books.  Thanks again, Sarah!

Finally, my next blog will be a special year-end treat for all of you Marx Brothers fans out there.  You won’t want to miss this one!  As I bid you farewell today, I ask that you ponder the following enigma…..  What makes teflon stick to a pan???

Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

A BUSY BEE…..

     YEP, THAT WOULD BE ME!  (I suppose I could also be called a busy body.)  Incidentally, do you know that a bumble bee has to make over two million flower taps just to produce one pound of honey?  I’ve studied the bee-havior of these fascinating insects.  In my world, FYI stands for “Flying Yellow Insects.”  For instance, I know how to make these little creatures “bee-have” and produce lots of honey.  Soothing music is the key.  (They love Sting)  Ouch!  Should I have gone with Paul McCartney and Wings?  My mother did NOT do a good job explaining the “birds and the bees” to my sister.  After she got stung, she thought she was pregnant!  Un-bee-lievable!  (Shall we move on?)

     The week began with a productive literary trip to Schulenburg, a quaint little town south of Austin.  (Fayette County)  The town used to be known for its kolaches, but that was before they were introduced to THE GRACELAND GANG and THE PIRATE PATH.  Now they’ve become a literary mecca, which should no doubt increase the number of tourists that visit.  If you ever visit, make sure to stop at Sengelmann Hall, an historic dance hall built in the late 1800s.  (They still host polka bands on the weekend!)

     Speaking of polka, or poker for that matter, I would like to thank Fred and Leigh Ann Woodward for hosting (Saturday) the Ninth Annual Kings & Queens Poker Tournament in Lago Vista, Texas.  What a blast!  The place was filled to the rafters with some of the best poker players in the state.  (Including Sharon “Big Win” Walker and her husband, Rich “Also Ran” Walker.)  The food, drinks, and entertainment were simply over the top this year.  Don’t ask me how, but The Mighty Cobra (me) managed to make it to the Final Table, where I placed high up on the leader board, but failed to win the $100,000 first place prize.  (or something like that!)

     On Wednesday last, the “Princess of Poker,” (my wife) won Second Place in the annual Christmas Poker Extravaganza downtown.  (She won a generous gift card, but refuses to share it with me!)  No matter.  During the break, I managed to sell several copies of DEVIL’S COVE, which substantially increased my net worth.

     On Friday I went to a holiday party where the host hired a mime!  However, due to time constraints, the mime did not perform.  Personally, I thing a mime is a terrible thing to waste.  But that’s just me.  Hey, I just thought of something…  If you were going to shoot a mime, would you have to use a silencer?  Hmm.

     Next week I’m off to Athens.  No, not Greece.  Athens, Texas.  I actually like East Texas, since I went to college in that area, and have several children living in that part of the state.  Should be an interesting visit.  Well, I must leave you now as I have another charity poker tournament to go to!  (I told you I was a busy bee!)  If I do well (very unlikely) I will brag, I mean, write about it on my next post.  A lot of talented players will be there, and they’re expecting a “full house.”  (So am I!)  Have a wonderful week…. Love to all…

     Doc Yanoff

YANOFF WINS NOBEL PRIZE FOR LITERATURE!

HEY, WAIT A MINUTE… DIDN’T I USE THIS SCHTICK LAST SUNDAY?  (I thought it sounded familiar!)  Well, fuhgetaboutit.  I never use a joke twice… unless I’m visiting my mother in south Florida.  (A lot of seniors in Boca Raton are hard of hearing, so I am forced to repeat most of my jokes.)  Do you realize that if the cities of Baton Rouge and Boca Raton merged the new city would be called Baton Raton?  Jeez, they would have gators and waders.  (There would also be some reptile dysfunctions, but I digress….. )

Speaking of awards (ones that I have actually received) my newest book, DEVIL’S COVE, was recently chosen as the “Mystery of the Month” by the Lake Charles (Louisiana) Book Club.  God willing, I will actually make it up to Lake Charles in the near future, and will be signing books for the group.  (Thank you for the honor!)

And since we’re discussing books and honors…..  It was my pleasure to recently donate some books (MURDER ON MAIDEN LANE an DEVIL’S COVE) to Angela Plunkett, a fellow member of the River Place Garden Club.  (The club that has added so much beauty to our community.)  Angela is a tireless supporter of a wonderful organization called the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.  (The books will be used in a gift bag at an upcoming fundraiser.)  Thank God we still have people like Angela who try to make the world a safer place!

So what else is new?  Well, my newest novel, THE GRACELAND GANG, is now with my new publisher and we have about two weeks of final revisions ahead of us.  The book cover is outstanding, and with the revisions and new chapters, I feel confident about the Pulitzer thing.  (Confident that SOMEBODY will win the award this year!)

My poker career has taken another unusual turn…. during the past week, I played in 3 tournaments, and placed third, fourth, and fifth!  I’d better stop playing for a while or I’m going to end up in last place!  Nonetheless, my fortuitous victories have earned me a great sum of money, which I will be donating to the S.S.C.F.  (Self-Serving Cruise Fund)

Last week I had the privilege of conducting a book signing in the lovely burg of McKinney.  (north Texas)  If you’re ever in that part of the state, you should check out Churchill’s British Restaurant & Pub.  Very interesting spot, and they have some great beers on tap.  (Not to mention Cragganmore single-malt Scotch!)  They also have other “spirits”……..  On the second Thursday of each month they host something called “Psychic Night.”  My aunt was a psycho, I mean, psychic, and she used to read palms.  (Lots of palms in Boca Raton.)  She wasn’t very good at predicting the future.  In fact, she was only “medium.”

In any case, if you enjoy psychic readings, then this is the place for you.  (They used to do Ouija, but folks got “bored.”)  You get it, Ouija Board?  Never mind.  (I’m predicting a few groans!)  Well, it’s time for me to dig into a cheese pocket, so I will bid you adieu.  Have a wonderful week and enjoy life!

Love to all,

Doc Yanoff

THE PRESLEY PLOT THICKENS….. AGAIN!

First, a confession…..  As many of you know, I’m never wrong.  I once thought I was wrong, but as it turned out, I was mistaken.  I have no idea what any of this has to do with today’s blog, but I thought you should know where I stand.  (Even though I’m sitting.)  Speaking of standing in the right place…..

If you go to Scandinavia, be careful where you stand in the water, and DO NOT go skinny-dipping!  The Pacu, a nasty-looking fish from South America, (related to the Piranha) has invaded the waters between Denmark and Sweden.  I know it sounds like a Brothers Grimm folk tale, but it’s true, and here’s the worse part…..     the Pacu is a testicle-biting fish!  Holy mackerel!

My uncle once got bit on the ear by a fish.  He lost his herring.  (As a courtesy, I shall leave out my Swedish meat ball jokes!)

ATTENTION ELVIS FANS!    An amazing auction is about to take place, just in time to coincide with the newly released edition of THE PRESLEY PLOT……    Way back in 1958, when the King was 21 years old, he accepted conscription (the draft) to the U.S. Army.  The young lad was eventually assigned to the 3rd Armored Division in Friedberg, Germany.  (A few miles from the home of the Brothers Grimm!)  Well, guess what?  Private Presley’s 3-piece uniform is about to be sold at auction!  (In case you’re wondering, the uniform is owned by Patsy Presley, one of his cousins.)  By the time you read this blog, somebody will have plunked down a small fortune, as the uniform has already become the MOST collectible item of the year!  (So much for Michael Jackson’s silly glove!)

If you should find yourself in Kerrville, Texas on Tuesday, stop by Louise Hays Park and you can listen to me ramble on about MURDER ON MAIDEN LANE and DEVIL’S COVE.  I will also be signing books and drinking some beer.  Our tent will be set up on the banks of the Guadalupe River, which runs through the city.  It is a very scenic park and there should be some good food available.  Traveling can take a toll on the mind and body as one ages, but as the great Mark Twain was fond of saying……   “Age is an issue of mind over matter.  If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.”   Amen, brother!

Have a safe and pleasant week…..  Love to all…..

Doc Yanoff

THE TRIPLE CROWN!

NO, NOT THE HORSE RACE!  (I wouldn’t “nag” you about that!)  However, I have crossed a “finish line” of sorts.  I am pleased to announce that the third installment of the “Adam Gold Mystery Series” will be published and available for purchase on or about August 1st.  The book is titled, DEVIL’S COVE, and it recently received the following review from a major New York publication (Kirkus Reviews) :

“Intensely clever, entirely credible… smart, suspenseful and securely anchored in procedure and purpose.  Yanoff is one of the best writers of clever mysteries at the moment… for those who enjoy a bit of humor in their heroes, Adam Gold has to be at the top of the list.”

Wow, I couldn’t have asked for a better review, and I am VERY grateful for the kind words.  We still need to adjust the spacing on the front cover (my first name is too close to my middle initial) but after that, we should be good to go.  Also exciting is the fact that we have reached a new blog milestone this week.  This (semi) humorous and  (vaguely) intelligent blog now has…..  5,000 followers!!

Forty-three countries now carry this blog, including, as of this morning, Bangladesh!  Do you know of this country?  Bangladesh is a small, liberal enclave surrounded by more conservative neighbors who would like to crush it.  (Much like Austin, Texas!)  Just kidding, we love Austin.  (After the Spurs lost, we’re not sure about San Antonio!)

Speaking of political things, did you notice that President Obama was in Texas recently?  Poor guy is engulfed by scandal.  When he went to San Antonio, he said, “Remember the Alamo!  And forget about Benghazi!”  Then he announced that the F.B.I. was using drones to spy on Americans.  Big deal.  Let’s be proud of the fact that the drones were made in America, by Americans, to spy on Americans.

Hey, I just saw an N.S.A. van drive by my house!  No wait, that’s a Verizon vehicle.  Never mind.  Incidentally, why do they call that other group the “Internal Revenue Service?”  Confiscating my money is one “service” I could do without!  (No more I.R.S. jokes, lest I be audited!)

So what else is new?  Have you noticed that women who wear burkas never smile?

I have been busy “cleaning up” the final manuscript of DEVIL’S COVE, so I have not participated in any book signing/speaking engagements this week.  However, next week I shall be making an appearance in Dripping Springs, a lovely little town that bills itself as the “Gateway to the Hill Country.”  (With this heat, I’m sure I’ll be doing plenty of dripping!)  Nonetheless, I shall “spring” into action when the show begins!  If you’re in the vicinity, stop on by Milton Reimers Ranch.  (and bring your checkbook and a canteen)

Well, amigos y amigettes, I must run.  Last night my posse and I ate at a restaurant called “Little Greece.”  (At least it was Greek to me)  Unfortunately, they used a lot of grease at Little Greece, hence the running.  Don’t worry, I’m sure everything will come out fine.  (Gross!)  Take care and have a wonderful week…..

And by the way, if all the world is a stage, where is the audience sitting?

Love to all,

Doc Yanoff